A00162 Summary:

COSPNSRWalker, Fahy, Hunter, Cruz, Dickens, Mamdani, Gonzalez-Rojas, Mitaynes, Kelles, Burdick, Anderson, Meeks, Septimo, Burgos, Davila, Zinerman, Ramos, Gallagher, Clark, Peoples-Stokes, Bichotte Hermelyn, Sayegh, Lupardo, Jacobson, Glick, Jackson, Hyndman, Darling, Steck, Paulin, Gibbs, Fall, Bronson, Tapia, Cunningham, Lucas, De Los Santos, Shrestha, Raga, Ardila, Aubry, Seawright, Levenberg, Shimsky, Bores, Kim, Hevesi, Cook, Reyes, Rosenthal L, Taylor, Forrest, Carroll, Epstein, Simon, Alvarez, O'Donnell, Pretlow, Solages, Lavine, Simone, Zaccaro, Dilan, Chandler-Waterman, Lee, Barrett, Benedetto, Dais, Rajkumar
MLTSPNSRMcDonald, Thiele
Amd §259-i, Exec L
Provides for findings of the state board of parole necessary for discretionary release of incarcerated individuals on parole.
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A00162 Actions:

01/04/2023referred to correction
05/24/2023reported referred to codes
01/03/2024referred to codes
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A00162 Committee Votes:

CORRECTION Chair:Dilan DATE:05/24/2023AYE/NAY:9/4 Action: Favorable refer to committee Codes

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A00162 Floor Votes:

There are no votes for this bill in this legislative session.
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A00162 Memo:

submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the executive law, in relation to findings of the state board of parole necessary for discretionary release of incarcerated individuals on parole   PURPOSE: Provides that the Board of Parole shall release inmates upon completion of their minimum terms of incarceration unless doing so presents an unreasonable public safety risk or the inmate is unlikely to live with- out violating the law.   SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section 1 amends Executive Law § 259-i (2)(c)(A). Section 2 provides an effective date.   JUSTIFICATION: When making a decision about whether to release an inmate to community supervision, the Board of Parole is currently required to take into account the inmate's likelihood of committing future crimes upon release and to determine whether or not an inmate's release will deprecate the seriousness of the crime. In practice, the Board does not often release an inmate on his or her first. appearance if the underlying crime was violent, even it if it took place more that 25 years prior to the board appearance and the inmate has a low risk of reoffending. Current law also makes the board susceptible to political pressure to deny parole to inmates with high profile crimes even if they are thoroughly rehabili- tated with excellent prison records because such a release could be considered by advocacy groups to "deprecate the seriousness of his crime." In 2015, only 17% of inmates were released upon their first board appearances, and only 20% on subsequent appearances. The Board's failure to grant parole to low risk inmates results in expensive, prolonged, unnecessary incarceration of middle aged and older inmates who have a very low probability of recidivism and who are very expensive to incarcerate because of high medical costs. This bill would require the board to release people to community super- vision when their minimum period of incarceration has been served unless there is a clearly articulated current public safety reason to keep them in prison. On subsequent board appearances, there would be a presumption of release unless the board determines by a preponderance of evidence that an inmate is unlikely to live without violating the law and that his or her release poses an unreasonable public safety risk.   PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 05/01/17 referred to correction 06/06/17 reported referred to codes 01/03/18 referred to codes   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: This bill will save the state approximately $60,000 per year for every inmate ,who is released upon the completion of his or her minimum sentence but who would have been kept in prison under current. law. It has no costs associated with it.   LOCAL FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.   EFFECTIVE DATE: Immediately.
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A00162 Text:

                STATE OF NEW YORK
                               2023-2024 Regular Sessions
                   IN ASSEMBLY
                                     January 4, 2023
        Introduced  by  M.  of  A.  WEPRIN, WALKER, FAHY, HUNTER, CRUZ, DICKENS,
          RIVERA, TAPIA, CUNNINGHAM, LUCAS, DE LOS SANTOS -- Multi-Sponsored  by
          --  M.  of  A.  THIELE  --  read once and referred to the Committee on
        AN ACT to amend the executive law, in relation to findings of the  state
          board  of  parole  necessary for discretionary release of incarcerated
          individuals on parole
          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
     1    Section  1.  Subparagraph  (A)  of  paragraph  (c) of subdivision 2 of
     2  section 259-i of the executive law, as amended by  chapter  322  of  the
     3  laws of 2021, is amended to read as follows:
     4    (A)  [Discretionary  release] Release on parole shall [not] be granted
     5  [merely as a reward for good conduct or efficient performance of  duties
     6  while confined but after considering if there is a reasonable probabili-
     7  ty  that,  if  such  incarcerated individual is released, he or she will
     8  live and remain at liberty without violating the law, and  that  his  or
     9  her release is not incompatible with the welfare of society and will not
    10  so deprecate the seriousness of his or her crime as to undermine respect
    11  for  law]  to any incarcerated individual appearing before the board who
    12  is eligible for release on parole, unless the parole case record  demon-
    13  strates  there  is  a  current and unreasonable risk the individual will
    14  violate the law if released and such risk cannot be mitigated by  parole
    15  supervision.    In making the [parole release decision] determination as
    16  to whether an individual  poses  a  current  and  unreasonable  risk  of
    17  violating the law if released, the procedures adopted pursuant to subdi-
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.

        A. 162                              2
     1  vision  four  of  section two hundred fifty-nine-c of this article shall
     2  require that the following be considered: (i) [the institutional  record
     3  including program goals and accomplishments, academic achievements,] any
     4  and all evidence of rehabilitation and reform, including but not limited
     5  to  selection  for participation in a temporary release program, partic-
     6  ipation in other programming, therapeutic support, community service, or
     7  vocational education, and any training  or  work  assignments  that  the
     8  department  made  available to the incarcerated individual, [therapy and
     9  interactions with] and statements of support from staff, volunteers  and
    10  other  incarcerated individuals; (ii) [performance, if any, as a partic-
    11  ipant in a temporary release program;  (iii)]  release  plans  including
    12  support  from family members and community [resources] networks, employ-
    13  ment, [education]  educational  and  training  opportunities,  clinical,
    14  therapeutic  and other reentry services, and any other available support
    15  services [available to the incarcerated  individual;  (iv)];  (iii)  any
    16  deportation order issued by the federal government against the incarcer-
    17  ated individual while in the custody of the department and any recommen-
    18  dation  regarding deportation made by the commissioner of the department
    19  pursuant to section one hundred forty-seven of the correction law;  (iv)
    20  the  length  of the determinate sentence to which the incarcerated indi-
    21  vidual would be subject had he or she received a  sentence  pursuant  to
    22  section  70.70 or section 70.71 of the penal law for a felony defined in
    23  article two hundred twenty or article  two  hundred  twenty-two  of  the
    24  penal  law;  (v) any current or prior statement made to the board by the
    25  crime victim or the victim's representative, where the crime  victim  is
    26  deceased or is mentally or physically incapacitated; (vi) [the length of
    27  the  determinate  sentence to which the incarcerated individual would be
    28  subject had he or she received a sentence pursuant to section  70.70  or
    29  section  70.71  of  the  penal  law  for a felony defined in article two
    30  hundred twenty or article two  hundred  twenty-one  of  the  penal  law;
    31  (vii)] the seriousness of the offense with due consideration to the type
    32  of  sentence,  length  of sentence and recommendations of the sentencing
    33  court, the district attorney, the attorney for the incarcerated individ-
    34  ual, the pre-sentence probation report as well as consideration  of  any
    35  mitigating  and  aggravating  factors,  and  activities following arrest
    36  prior to confinement; and [(viii)] (vii) prior criminal record,  includ-
    37  ing  the  nature  and  pattern  of  offenses, adjustment to any previous
    38  probation or parole  supervision  and  institutional  confinement.    In
    39  considering  whether  there is a current and unreasonable risk the indi-
    40  vidual will violate the law if released and such risk  cannot  be  miti-
    41  gated  by  parole  supervision,  the board shall not base their determi-
    42  nation solely or primarily on any or all of  the  factors  contained  in
    43  clauses  (v) through (vii) of this subparagraph. The board shall explain
    44  in writing in detailed, individualized,  and  non-conclusory  terms  the
    45  basis  for  a denial of parole, including how the parole case record and
    46  the enumerated factors were considered  and  weighed.  The  board  shall
    47  provide  toll free telephone access for crime victims. In the case of an
    48  oral statement made in accordance with subdivision one of section 440.50
    49  of the criminal procedure law, the parole board member shall  present  a
    50  written  report  of  the statement to the parole board. A crime victim's
    51  representative shall mean the crime victim's closest surviving relative,
    52  the committee or guardian of such person, or the legal representative of
    53  any such person. Such statement submitted  by  the  victim  or  victim's
    54  representative  may include information concerning threatening or intim-
    55  idating conduct toward the victim, the victim's representative,  or  the
    56  victim's  family,  made  by the person sentenced and occurring after the

        A. 162                              3
     1  sentencing. Such information may include, but need not  be  limited  to,
     2  the threatening or intimidating conduct of any other person who or which
     3  is  directed  by  the person sentenced. Any statement by a victim or the
     4  victim's  representative  made  to  the board shall be maintained by the
     5  department in the file provided  to  the  board  when  interviewing  the
     6  incarcerated  individual  in  consideration  of  release.  A  victim  or
     7  victim's representative who has  submitted  a  written  request  to  the
     8  department  for  the transcript of such interview shall be provided such
     9  transcript as soon as it becomes available.
    10    § 2. The state board of parole shall report quarterly  in  writing  to
    11  the governor, the temporary president of the senate, the minority leader
    12  of  the  senate, the speaker of the assembly, the minority leader of the
    13  assembly,  and  to  the  chairpersons  of  the  assembly  committee   on
    14  correction  and  the  senate  committee  on  crime  victims,  crime  and
    15  correction on denials of parole.   Written  reports  shall  include  the
    16  number  of individuals denied parole release each month, the articulated
    17  reasons for each denial, the assigned commissioners in each case  and  a
    18  record  of  their  votes,  and demographic information on each applicant
    19  denied including race, sex, facility, and crime of  conviction.  Reports
    20  shall  exclude  information  that would identify the individual. Reports
    21  required by this section shall be made available to the public and post-
    22  ed quarterly on the websites maintained by the state board of parole.
    23    § 3. This act shall take effect immediately.
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A00162 LFIN:

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